X, Elon Musk’s social network born from the ashes of Twitter, would have slowed down the opening speed of links to information sites unwelcome to the new property for days. Sites such as the New York Times and Reuters, as well as those of social platforms such as Facebook, Threads (the anti-Twitter of Meta) and Bluesky (a social network launched a few months ago by Jack Dorsey, former founder of Twitter) would have been hindered for days . The slowdown did not affect all sites, but only some in particular. Those who have been most criticized by Elon Musk in recent months,
All the sites concerned, according to what various reports have highlighted, take longer to load than other sites such as, for example, the Washington Post and USA Today. A targeted slowdown. Which affects the loading speed of a page, consequently affecting the search engine rankings of an article or site. In fact, sites that load quickly tend to appear higher in Google searches, which prioritizes sites that load in no more than 2.5 seconds.
Five, ten seconds to open links
The delay, according to what emerged on the American sites, was first reported by a user early Tuesday on the Hacker News discussion forum. The anonymous user pointed out that Twitter users will see at least a five second delay on some sites before being redirected to the correct address by “t.co”, a link shortening service used by Twitter to process posted links on his site.
According to Littledata, a site that monitors Google Analytics, only sites that load in less than 2.9 seconds ranked in the top 20% of search results in September 2022, but with The Times and Reuters taking five and ten seconds to load, it is possible that the slowdown is having a large effect on these media.
Musk’s battle against the media and journalists
When he bought Twitter, Musk called himself “a free speech absolutist.” His own investment, 44 billion to secure the platform, was motivated by the felt need to guarantee everyone maximum access to information, without censorship or one-way restrictions. But compared to his intentions, Musk has not always behaved accordingly. By late Tuesday afternoon, X appears to have cleared the lag. Contacted for comment by Reuters, X confirmed the existence of the delay, which was later removed, without however providing further details.
Billionaire Elon Musk, who bought Twitter in October for 44 billion, has long since waged a personal battle against the media and journalists, especially those who have expressed criticism of his companies, including Tesla and SpaceX.